Shrike 5 and other February birds

Martin Kehoe called and reported another Northern Shrike on 2/19.  He spotted this one at the intersection of Yale Bridge and Clover Roads in Winnebago Co.

Martin also reported that Tim Atz spotted 3 Short-eared Owls in the area of Winslow and Fritz Roads on 2/18.  Martin said that he has seen SEOWs flying in to Ferguson FP from the west.

Mike Descamps sent me photos of a female Green-winged Teal and a Black Duck in Hoople’s Pond on Stephens Road.  He reported up to 6 Black Ducks there on the day of his visit.  I stopped there yesterday, 2/20.  The teal was still present, but only 2 Black Ducks.

No further reports of the immature Golden Eagle have been received since the report on 2/16.

Shrike 4, and other birds

This afternoon, I spotted an adult Northern Shrike along Blair Road about 1/4 mile east of Goeke Road.  Goeke Road is the county line between Winnebago and Stephenson County northwest of Pecatonica.

Earlier, there were 3 Rough-legged Hawks, 1 Red-tail, and 2 Bald Eagles at Ferguson Forest Preserve.

Another Rough-leg, 5 Red-tails, 2 adult Bald Eagles perched closely (probably the resident nesting pair) and an Am. Kestrel were seen from the rusty gate at Howard’s on IL 70.

No sign of the Golden Eagle seen yesterday along Hauley Road by Ed Cope.  An adult Bald Eagle was in a tree along the road near the deer carcass remnants that are left in the field on the east side of the road.

Sinnissippi Audubon Meeting Tuesday

The Sinnissippi Audubon Society is hosting a meeting on Tues. Feb. 17 at 6:30 PM at Klehm Arboretum.   The program is “Do Nestling Red Winged Blackbirds Blackmail Their Parents Into Feeding Them”  The speaker will be Ken Yakasawa, Biology Professor at Beloit College.  He is a behavioral biologist with research interest in avian  mating systems, sexual selection, territoriality, vocal and visual communication, parental care and brood parasitism.    He is also interested in science education, having served on the Education Committee of the Animal Behavior Society and edited two sets of laboratory and field exercises in animal behavior.  Please join us for this free event.

Jack Armstrong

8 Short-eared Owls at Ferguson FP

Kevin Kaltenbach just called me to report that he counted 8 Short-eared Owls at Ferguson FP preserve tonight.  He parked on the north side in the parking lot off of Winslow Road, then hiked out to where he had a full view of the marsh.  He said that the owls were mostly to the SW of his position.

This is the largest number of owls reported from Ferguson so far this year.

Shrike 3

On Thursday, February 5, several groups worked on clearing invasive brush, box elders, etc. from Bell Bowl prairie.  In the process, they discovered a fresh mouse impaled on the thorn of a honey locust.  They did not remove the tree and left the mouse in place.  This is the 3rd record of  shrike in Winnebago County this winter-most probably a Northern Shrike.  Please check Bell Bowl if you are in the vicinity of the airport and report the species here if you see the shrike.  Thank you!

Birds from the car

Joyce and I drove around on Friday morning and looked for birds. At Rock Cut we found a very small amount of water open with many Canada geese, 2 redhead ducks, 1 coot and a few mallards. In the camping area, one Great Horned Owl, some tree sparrows, juncos, chickadees, cardinals, blue jays, and nuthatches eating corn spread along the road
At Severson Dells we found the usual bird at the feeders, chickadees, nuthatch, junco, downy, and redbellies, and goldfinches. Also, on the way out by the road, 4 bluebirds.
On Smith road, no shrike, no heron only a few horned larks.
More horned larks on Kelly Rd.

Joyce and Jack Armstrong